15 Apr 2010

Tonga hires two foreign prosecutors to deal with Ashika cases

2:04 pm on 15 April 2010

The Tongan Attorney General, John Cauchi, has appointed two prosecutors from outside the country to assist with prosecutions arising from the sinking of the ferry Princess Ashika.

74 people died when the ferry sank last August.

Since a Royal Commission began investigating the tragedy a number of people have been arrested and charged by the police.

Richard Pamatatau reports.

"The Tongan Royal Commission found there was negligence, a lack of due diligence and the ship should never have been bought. The attorney-general, John Cauchi, says the Wellington crown solicitor, Grant Burston, and the New South Wales deputy senior crown solicitor, Dan Howard, will achieve a just outcome for those charged. Mr Cauchi says the will consider whether charges arising from the commission hearings should also be laid under the Royal Commission Act and the Criminal Offences Act."